Detroit Pistons guard Cade Cunningham will reportedly remain out indefinitely while working to determine the best course of treatment for his shin injury.
NBA insider Marc Stein reported Saturday the Pistons are "trying to determine if surgery is needed." It's "feared" the 2022 NBA All-Rookie First Team selection suffered a stress fracture, per James L. Edwards III and Shams Charania of The Athletic.
Cunningham has missed the Pistons' last five games, all losses, because of shin soreness. He last played in a Nov. 9 loss to the Boston Celtics.
The 2021 first overall pick was off to a solid start to the 2022-23 season before the absence. He'd averaged 19.9 points, 6.2 rebounds and 6.0 assists across 12 appearances, though offensive efficiency remained a concern (41.5 percent shooting from the field).
Sources told Edwards and Charania that Cunningham first dealt with shin soreness during his standout rookie campaign last year and the issue popped up again during the offseason.
The 21-year-old Oklahoma State product is attempting to "trying to turn over every stone" before deciding whether surgery will be the best option, according to The Athletic.
Detroit has used a variety of players to fill the ball-handling void while Cunningham has been sidelined. Jaden Ivey, Killian Hayes and Cory Joseph have all received more opportunities to lead the offense to varying degrees of success.
Of course, it's not fair to expect anyone on the Pistons to replicate the type of high-volume role the Texas native plays when healthy.
"Regardless of the route Cunningham takes, he is expected to be out indefinitely as everyone invested in the rising star's future works to determine the best course of action for his long-term health," Edwards and Charania wrote.
Meanwhile, the Pistons will look to find a lineup combination that can generate more consistent success amid a frustrating 3-14 start.
Detroit will be back on the floor Sunday when it visits the Golden 1 Center to take on the 8-6 Sacramento Kings.